Tuesday, September 06, 2005

This rocked my boat today - "Blessed are those that mourn..."

From PreachingToday.com

In 1994, Leroy Sievers, producer of the ABC news program Nightline, was sent to document the end of the genocidal campaign in Rwanda, Africa. Looking back on the experience, Sievers said: "There is evil in the world; I had seen it up close. But nothing comes close to Rwanda."

The conflict had involved the country's two primary ethnic groups, as Hutu rebels systematically slaughtered the Tutsi tribe. "This wasn't a war fought with smart bombs," said Sievers. "This was machetes and clubs and knives. Almost a million people killed by hand." The genocide was widely reported and discussed, and a U.N. peacekeeping force was sent to the country. However, the commander of that force, Romeo Dallaire, did not have enough troops to stop the Hutus, and was later told not to take sides. Sievers says that Dallaire "was found six years later on a park bench in Canada, blind drunk, screaming for someone to kill him."

Sievers himself remains extremely affected by what he saw in Rwanda, especially in a refugee camp located on the Zaire-Rwanda border. Known as Camp Cholera, it was essentially a barren wasteland where 50 to 100 thousand Rwandan refugees had come to die. One event in particular, which took place as he stood in the middle of the camp, has burned itself into Sievers' mind:
I felt something on my foot. I looked down and saw a small boy. He looked to be about five, which meant he was probably ten. Malnutrition will do that. He was lying on his back and had thrown his arm up over his head. His fingers had gotten tangled in my boot laces. As I looked in his eyes, I saw the light go out. And he died. … And all I could do was shake my foot to free my laces from his fingers, and then move on to catch up to my team. …

Every night, when I lie down in bed in my nice suburban house and I close my eyes to sleep, that little boy comes to me and tugs on my boot laces. And every night he asks me why we let this happen, and I have no answer. And every night I pray that it will be the last time that he comes for me.

But I know better.
  • Citation: Leroy Sievers, "The Ghosts of Rwanda," The Week, (8-12-05); submitted by Kevin Miller, Carol Stream, Illinois.


At 10:28 PM, Anonymous Joey Garrett said...

so much to be said in your own state and you choose this, I shall no longer follow this blog.

At 9:46 AM, Blogger Danno said...

Hi Matt,
Please post new information on your blog as to what is happening in Jackson Mississippi due to Katrina.


At 6:28 PM, Blogger Servants of the Living God said...

Hi Matt,
I can appreciate your posting choices. Is it possible that this is just too difficult to put into words what is happening in your neck of the woods. I will not abandon your blog because you choose not to spill your guts in regards to Katrina. We are praying for you all even if we don't know all the details. God knows and I trust HIS Will for your life and all those in the affected area.
Lets have some patience folks. Are we really being concerned or just rubber neckin?


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